Karen Richards

Reporter

Karen Richards has been a volunteer reporter since the fall of 2012.

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www.newslincolncounty.com

Federal District Court Judge Michael McShane will hold a hearing Thursday in the Newport Fisherman’s Wives’ suit against the U.S. Coast Guard. As theCoast Guard air facility in Newport is scheduled to close Monday, the timing is tight.

Dungeness crab season has started in Oregon and more boats are heading into the Pacific from Newport’s Yaquina Bay. Kevin Greenwood is the Manager of the Port of Newport. He says many people are concerned about the increased response time if troubled vessels can’t get help from Newport’s rescue helicopter:

ratehospitals.com

Caregivers at McKenzie-Willamette Medical Center have agreed on a two-year contract. Over 300 members of  S-E-I-U Local 49 had been without a contract for the past year. Jesse Stemmler is with the Service Employees International Union. He feels the walkout in late October was key:

Stemmler: “Having the three-day strike, and just seeing the overwhelming support was really a big help for these workers. This is a process, and the contract has been settled. This is by no means an end to the important work they’re doing.”

toysrus.com

The holiday season often means shopping for toys and games for young people. One Oregon consumer advocacy group wants people to remember to avoid dangerous toys.

forestcamping.com

New camping rules for parts of the Umpqua National Forest near Cottage Grove go into effect today (Monday). Officials say long-term, homeless campers have created unsanitary conditions.

Camping along portions of Brice Creek and Sharps Creek will be limited to 14 days in a 45-day period. Melissa Swain is with the Cottage Grove Ranger District. She says the rule is changing because some campers have not kept clean sites:

www.newslincolncounty.com

Newport's search and rescue Coast Guard air facility is scheduled to cease operations December 15th. Tuesday morning, four groups filed a lawsuit in Federal Court in Eugene to try to stop the closure.

In the lawsuit, the Newport Fishermen's Wives, along with the City of Newport, Lincoln County, and the Port of Newport allege the Coast Guard failed to follow the legal process required to decommission a facility. They claim the Coast Guard has not adequately assessed impacts to public and environmental safety. Ginny Goblirsch is with the Newport Fishermen's Wives.

interstate guide

Northwest travelers should expect airports, roads, bus and train stations to be crowded this week. It’s projected to be the busiest Thanksgiving travel season in seven years. Marie Dodds is with Triple-A Oregon. She says the improving economy has an influence.

Dodds: "Americans are more optimistic about the future. They're feeling better about their personal economic situations.  And when people feel like that they tend to spend more on things like travel.”

Heavy rain is falling in the Willamette Valley, and that means snow in the Cascades. That’s good news for skiers and snow boarders. Mount Bachelor opens Monday, with other resorts following soon.

Mount Bachelor will open one lift and the terrain park Monday. Resort spokesman Drew Jackson is optimistic this weekend’s forecasted snow will allow them to open more for the holiday:

Jackson: “Things are looking good for Thanksgiving weekend. We hope to have at least three lifts open, at least five kilometers in the Nordic Center.”

oregon14.com

Today (Tuesday), Doha Qatar was chosen over Eugene and Barcelona to host the 2019 World Track and Field Championships.

It took two rounds of voting for the 27 member IAAF council to reach a decision. After Barcelona was eliminated, Doha received 15 votes and Eugene, 12. Vin Lananna, President of Track Town USA, spoke from Monaco, where the announcement was made:

Lananna: “We appreciate all of the collaboration, the excitement, the encouragement, and having the guts to step forward and take it on the world stage.”

wikipedia.com

Postal workers in Springfield and across the country are protesting today (Friday). It’s the last day the Board of Governors can vote to stop the closure of 82 facilities across the country.

The Springfield mail processing center is scheduled to be fully closed by next July. Peter Hass is a spokesman for the U.S. Postal Service. He says the closure has been in the works for years, because of the steep decline in first class mail. Hass says the consolidation is part of a nation-wide service standard change:

wikipedia

Too early for holiday cheer? Not for Oregon’s 100-million dollar Christmas tree industry. November is the growers’ peak time for shipping. They’re taking extra measures this year to be sure fewer trees are rejected due to pests.

Oregon is the nation’s largest producer of Christmas trees, exporting six to seven million annually. Gary McAninch is with the Oregon Department of Agriculture. He says some Oregon species of slugs and yellow jackets cause big problems in places like Hawaii:

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